We never made it to Cancun. :(
I will start from the beginning.....things started going wrong the night before we were supposed to leave (Wednesday). We got out our passports and when I opened mine to look at it I realized I never got my name changed after we got married. My passport still showed my maiden name, not my married name. Well, my plane ticket, drivers license, etc all show my married name. Great. I called United and explained the situation and they told me that as long as I had my original marriage license that there should not be a problem. That made me feel a little better but I was still nervous about it. You just never know when you are flying international...
So, the next morning our flight was supposed to leave at 9:00 AM. We got to the airport 2 hours before our flight and the lines for checking in and security were insanely long. We had never seen lines like that before. We made it thru check in without any problems (the marriage license worked!) and went to get in line for security. Longest.line.ever. After 30 minutes in line I was starting to get nervous. I knew our plane was probably starting to board but we still had probably 100 people in front of us in the security line. A couple people were nice enough to let us get in front of them but it did not help much. We made it thru the line about 8:40 and tried to get to our gate as fast as we could. We ran up to our gate ONE minute after they closed it down. Apparently they close the gate 15 minutes before take off. We have both flown Continental (United) our whole lives and had never heard that rule before. The agents that were working at the desk at the gate said we could not get on and they gave our seats away to 2 people that were on standby. WE MISSED OUR FLIGHT BY ONE MINUTE!!
After a minor breakdown and freak out moment we headed to customer service to see what we could do. They put us on standby for the next flight which left around 11:00 AM. To make a really long story short, we were on standby for 5 more flights and never made it on any of them. Every flight was already oversold so it was next to impossible to get on one. I felt a little bad but I was praying for people to get stuck in security or miss their flight for another reason just so we could get on. It did not happen though.
The ticket agent who was originally very rude to us when we missed our original flight ended up being nice to us and felt really bad about what had happened. So we just tagged along with her to each gate she went to and she kept us updated on where we were on the standby list. She would tell us how many people who need to miss the flight in order for us to get on and how many people were overbooked on the flight. On the 2:15 flight she was finally able to make something happen...she got ONE of us on the flight. Well, that brought on a whole other level of questions and stress. What if one of us got on the flight and the other one never was able to get on one? Then one of us would be stuck in Mexico alone and the other in the Houston airport alone. We had to make a quick decision not to take the ticket. We decided that if we could both not get on a plane together that we would not do it.
After a long, terrible, emotional day, we decided to give up and go home. Before we left though, we talked to customer service and they told us there were 2 tickets left to fly to Cozumel the next morning and they could book us right then. So, we decided to do that and we would just find a resort in Cozumel and spend the weekend there instead. Neither one of us was too thrilled with this option though. We did not really want to go to Cozumel and the weather was going to be terrible all weekend. We left the airport that night with confirmed seats to Cozumel the next morning but still not sure what we were going to do.
At this point our luggage is MIA. One person told us that our luggage was in Cancun, one said it was in Houston and a couple people just did not know where it was. We sat in the luggage customer service office for an hour and left there without knowing where our luggage was but they said they would call us as soon as they found it. Awesome.
We leave the airport and drive straight to Yucatan Taco Stand close to our house and drink margaritas and talk about what to do for the next 2 hours.
We considered forgetting about Mexico and just changing our tickets to Vegas or Phoenix or somewhere else in the US. But after hours of looking at flights and options, nothing was working out...it was going to be WAY too expensive or the flight times were not working. Late Thursday night we made a final decision to just stay home. We called Cancun and canceled our resort and we called United and canceled our flights to Cozumel. We were just going to have a 4 day "staycation" at home.
The next morning we got a call from the airport saying they had our luggage. We drove 30 minutes to the airport, went to the luggage office and were told that they did NOT have our luggage. They were still unsure of where it was. Ugh... I am still not sure why anyone ever called us to tell us it was there, when clearly it was not. Finally they lady in customer service had the idea to call the Cancun airport to ask about the luggage. And guess what?? It was there! So, they were going to put it on the next flight to Houston. Around 5:00 we finally got the call that they had our luggage and we could come pick it up. Hallelujah! So, we drove BACK to the airport to pick it up and yes, this time, it was there. For all the many inconveniences they did issue us each a $100 voucher to use on future flights.
Our bags had to go thru customs 2 times...this is what my suitcase looked like when I opened it-
They had gone thru my 2 toiletrie bags and not zipped them back up. Stuff was EVERYWHERE.. lotions and hair products leaked all over the inside of my suite case and clothes.
So, as terrible as all of this was...we ended up having a really fun, relaxing weekend at home. We got a lot of stuff done around our house, we spent many, many hours in our pool, went to a friend's surprise birthday party, went to Moody Gardens & Galveston beach and had our backyard landscaped. As sad and disappointed as we were on Thursday and Friday, it actually ended up being nice to have a weekend at home without any plans. We could do whatever we wanted, when we wanted. And we NEVER have weekends like that. Missing our flight turned out to be somewhat of a blessing in disguise. For some reason it was not in God's plan for us to be in Mexico or anywhere but our home. If Cancun or Vegas was in His plan for us, we would have been there. That is what I keep reminding myself when I get a little sad about missing our trip. :)
Sorry for the super long (probably boring to most of you) post today but I wanted to share so that we could look back on this 10 years from now and laugh about it!
And just a little advice...if you are flying internationally out of Houston, make sure to arrive 3 hours before your flight!! Don't say I did not warn you :)
Hope you all had a fun, relaxing and safe Memorial Day weekend!